Kaili Travel Blog› entry 23 of 37 › view all entries
I departed Beijing West Railway station yesterday afternoon. Thanks to my friends Xu Min and Mama for helping me with shipping my bike and finding my train. The train ride was about 30 hours and there's not much to say about it. I got called my first 'laowai' on the train (my translation of laowai is: one who is not Chinese like us). No one in Beijing ever called me that, but it didn't take long to hear it once I left. I nodded at the guy when he said it and I think he was a bit embarrassed. He later offered me some of his snacks. As usual, the ringtones were blaring for everyone to hear and the men talked at excessive volumes on the train. Fortunately, everyone wanted to sleep too and there was little noise during the night.
I arrived in Kaili at about 7pm and tried to track down Rusty Jr., who had been shipped a couple days earlier. I showed the lady at the train station my shipping reciept and for some reason she wrote me a note in Chinese. I can speak a little, but I can only read about 10 characters, so I don't know why she thought that writing the instructions down would help (I later learned that the note said: walk to the left for 5 minutes). I asked a cabbie to take me to a cheap hostel in my guidebook. When we arrived the name of the place was completely different and I was sure he was scamming me. The price was the same and I was only staying one night, so I didn't care that much.
Today I went back to the train station and found the shipping department (thanks to the English speakers at CITS for directing me). I paid 3 yuan and was soon reunited with Rusty Jr.! I rode him into town, getting used to the feel of biking once again. Today I will begin heading down to Guilin in Guangxi province!